Azad Essa's Blogs

  • The Gambia and Zimbabwe: a tale of two kleptos

    This post was first published as a syndicated column via IOL and Independent Media. In the central lobby of the Banjul International Airport, a painting of Yahya Jammeh, the former president of The Gambia, adorns the ceiling. Jammeh, in his characteristic white, free-flowing kaftan, is shown with his arms wide open, a Qur’an in one hand and a short staff in another. Passers-by and passengers look up at the ceiling and chuckle at the Sistine Chapel-like knock-off. It’s been almost a year since Jammeh lost the December 2016 presidential elections that pushed him into exile in Equatorial Guinea and yet here he was, still looking down on us. Indeed, I consider it a rather wicked twist of fate that I found myself in southern Senegal and then in The Gambia when the action began in Zimbabwe last week. I would have...

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